Jump to content
SASS Wire Forum

Archived

This topic is now archived and is closed to further replies.

Hiram A. Boeuf

Remington Rolling Block 50-70 Reloading Questions

Recommended Posts

Howdy, Pards!

 

I just acquired a Remington Rolling Block (a beautiful New York National Guard 3-band version) chambered in .50-70. This is an unusual caliber, and I've never reloaded for it. The rifle came with a Lyman die set and 20 pieces of brass (no head stamp). Does anyone have any experience with reloading BP for this cartridge? I believe the bore should slug at .515 (haven't done it yet), so 50-70 Sharps will be a tad small (I think they're .512 dia.). Looks like I'll have to cast my own with the Lee 515-450 mold. I guess 20:1 alloy? 

 

I would love to have a conversation with someone familiar with this cartridge. I've watched a few YouTube videos on reloading for it. but I'd feel more comfortable being able to ask questions. 

 

Thanks for your help!

 

Hiram

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

It's not a unusual cartridge,  and very easy to reload for.  Several companies have all the supplies needed

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
24 minutes ago, evil dogooder said:

It's not a unusual cartridge,  and very easy to reload for.  Several companies have all the supplies needed

I guess I misspoke. It's new to me, and most of what I'm seeing out there is for 50-70 Sharps, so I said "unusual." I have found a few sites (Buffalo Arms, Track of the Wolf) that have supplies for 50-70 Govt., but I haven't been able to find anyone who sells BP-lubed bullets that are sized to .515. I'll keep looking...it's only been a few hours.  Thanks.

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I have reloaded for it. My good friend Rimrock Jim has the same gun as you. Lot of fun to shoot. Even with the 58 pound trigger pull. We use a 450 grain Lee flat point Bullet cast with about 100% pure lead with Winchester large rifle magnum primers, 60 grains of 2F black powder and a 1/2 lamb tallow 1/2 bees wax grease cookie. It is fun to shoot. 
 

the mold you talked about is the mold we use. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I load and shoot a cute little 50/70 roller.  Mine has a new barrel on it and I cast a 480 grain .512 diameter Paul Jones bullet for it. Buffalo arms lists a .515 450 grain bullet, but they are out of stock right now. Starline has brass. Its a no brainer to load!!!

      I have a busy day today, but would be glad to talk to you about it tomorrow or some time in the near future.

                                       Jasper

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
9 hours ago, Hiram A. Boeuf said:

I guess I misspoke. It's new to me, and most of what I'm seeing out there is for 50-70 Sharps, so I said "unusual." I have found a few sites (Buffalo Arms, Track of the Wolf) that have supplies for 50-70 Govt., but I haven't been able to find anyone who sells BP-lubed bullets that are sized to .515. I'll keep looking...it's only been a few hours.  Thanks.

 

 

Look up,  Montana Bullet Works.

OLG 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

OP, have you loaded real BP before?

It's a whole different world compared to smokeless. 

OLG 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Buffalo Arms has the bullets.   

 

While I do not (yet) have a gun in this caliber, I have always been curious about it.  Finding smokeless data is difficult at best.   The closest analogy I can find is that what are deemed to be "Trapdoor safe" .45-70 loads are not considered "Rolling Block safe," or so I have been led to believe.   Assuming that is accurate, then it is reasonable to assume that .50-70 is black powder only in any vintage firearm.   Oddly, there are new made guns in the caliber, and even they are supposedly stamped for black powder only.   It is my understanding that there is no "SAMMI spec" for it.

An interesting side note is that if you have a vintage 56-50 Spencer, brass for it is made using cut down .50-70 brass.  (For some reason the modern made 56-60 Spencer brass made for use in modern replicas won't work properly in original guns.)  I do know know for certain if the Spencer round is the same as the Government one, just shorter, so I don't know if you can use the Spencer round as a "reduced" loading in one or not.  They both use the same .515" bullets, but where as the Spencer used a 350 grainer, the Government round used a 450 grain bullet.

 

ALL of this off the top of my head memory while at work.  Please keep that in mind and double check my assertions!    

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
2 hours ago, The Original Lumpy Gritz said:

OP, have you loaded real BP before?

It's a whole different world compared to smokeless. 

OLG 

Only for 45 Colt and 12 Gauge. This is new to me, so I'm trying to get educated about it. I figured this was a good place to ask. Thanks everyone for the advice. I just ordered some pre-loaded BP rounds and some bullets lubed with SPG from Buffalo Arms. I'm going to take it slow and learn what I need to know. Thanks. all! 

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Check out the Shiloh Sharps forum.

Like I said, whole different world and that includes case care and gun cleaning. 

OLG 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

It has been a while since I loaded .50-70 Gov't. At the time, I was developing smokeless loads for an original Sharps M1869 cartridge conversion and a NY State Rolling Block Carbine.  I have retired the Sharps out of respect for its age and heritage, and sold both a NY Carbine and Rifle, just because I got tired of them.

The following loads were developed carefully and chronographed using an Oehler M35: [Note: I cannot be responsible for the use of the following data in original guns or even replicas.  The data is posted solely for the curiosity and amusement of the readers!!]

Cartridge Cases: Old Reliable Cartridge Co., Milwaukee, WI (Belgian mfgr)

Primer: Remington 9-1/2 large rifle

Bullet:  Cast Lyman 515450 mould, Lyman #2 equivalent mixture

Bullet Dia.: .515"

Powder            Charge Wt.         MV                          ME                   Remarks                                                                                                                                                    

IMR4198               31.2 gr             1215 ft/sec           1432  ft-lbs         2" square single-ply toilet paper poked loosely into case over powder; bullet to seat wad

                                                                                                                         Trapdoor Spgfield 32-1/2" bbl

        "                        "                      1130 ft/sec           1218                      Same as above; original Sharps Carbine 22" bbl  NYState RB Carbine similar

IMR 3031               36.8gr              1151 ft/sec                                         M1870 Remington RB Carbine 22" bbl; similar MV from Sharps Carbine

Pyrodex RS          56 gr               1294 ft/sec           1560                     M1869 Trapdoor Springfield 32-1/2" bbl  Powder heavily compressed  Very accurate

 

Just sayin....  Ride carefully, Pard!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
15 hours ago, The Original Lumpy Gritz said:

The OP's rife is only safe with real BP loads.

OLG 

Understood.  The above data was purely for general interest, with the attached disclaimer.  Might be okay for some modern repros.  Unfortunately, at the time I developed the loads, I did not have my Oehler M43 pressure-measuring equipment.

Be well, all!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Not uncommon to have the bullet be a few thousandths undersize with BP loads.  When fired the bullet upsets enough to fit the bore.  With Paper Patch it is common to load to bore diameter, and the upset will take care of the remaining 15-20 thousandths.  I'm expecting on my 50-90 to be starting with a .490-.492 bullet and patching it up to just about .498-.500 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

New made .50-70 guns typically take a .512 bullet but your original will want a .515.  As noted above, Buffalo Arms has it, I believe 450g and lubed with SPG. I shoot these out of both my Rolling Block carbine and original/altered Sharps carbine, both very accurately.  Modern brass cases don’t hold what the originals did so you likely won’t fit in 70 grains of BP like they did in the day.  My load with the BA bullet and wad is just 55 grains of 2F.  This load also did well in a friend’s .50-70 Trapdoor.  I always recommend staying with black powder or a substitute with theses old guns. 
 

Seamus

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

×
×
  • Create New...

Important Information

By using this site, you agree to our Terms of Use.